Disclaimer: I don’t own Buffy, Angel, or Leverage. That’s Joss Whedon and Dean Devlin.
Author's Notes: When I was writing The Lullaby Job, TouchoftheWind would toss out random ideas (or I would) and I'd love them but couldn't necessarily find a place for them in the story. Thus, codas.
They’d learned early on that neither twin liked the ‘om, nom’ game, where somebody pretended to eat them all up. Dawn wailed like she was terrified and Connor screamed, aimed fist and foot at what was ‘nomming’ him. He’d chipped Hardison’s tooth and managed to black Eliot’s eye and that had been that.
But other than that, they were pretty normal kids when it came to play. Which was why they all stared, slack-jawed, when Tara leaned down and said, ‘Boo!’ and Dawn blinked at her like she was stunned for a moment, then her face puckered up, she fell back onto her diaper cushioned bottom since she’d pulled herself up using the coffee table, and started to wail, whole body shaking with it. And Eliot just got the eeriest feeling that Dawn was fucking with Tara. Like, she knew the woman was awkward around them, so she fell just to freak her out even more.
Parker, of course, swept her up into a hug, scowling at Tara. Eliot shifted just a little to get between them in case Parker decided that Tara needed punching.
“I didn’t think it would make her cry,” Tara said stiffly.
“Normally doesn’t,” Eliot said gruffly, noticing that Parker’s shoulder was pressing into his shoulder blade and Dawn was quietly murmuring, “Ma ma ma.”
“Nothing to fret about,” Sophie said soothingly, patting Tara’s arm as she passed. “Just another thing to add to the list.”
Parker’s lips pursed like she wanted to argue but she set Dawn back on the floor. Dawn automatically took off crawling and used the tops of Tara’s boots to pull herself up, laughing up at her. Dawn bounced a little, hands knotted in Tara’s boots, before she looked up and raised her arms.
Tara’s face worked before she bent and picked her up. Dawn immediately shoved Tara’s chunky necklace into her mouth and grinned at Eliot around it before Tara managed to gently disentangle her from it. Eliot sighed, shook his head, and went to keep Connor from chewing on the dining room table leg. He loved them but his kids were trouble.